Blackburn Rovers 1
The Leicester manager Martin O'Neill pulled off a tactical masterstroke to secure a point after Blackburn's Chris Sutton had threatened to inflict the fifth home defeat in seven Premiership games at Filbert Street.
Rovers' revival under their caretaker manager Tony Parkes now stretches to five games and, despite his strong and lengthy protests that he does not want the full-time position, he is doing an impressive job of convincing the club's owner, Jack Walker, otherwise.
Sampdoria's Sven Goran Ericsson still remains favourite to take over, but whoever succeeds Parkes will inherit a side growing in confidence, composure and stature by the week. In Sutton, the new manager will find a player back at the top of his game after a prolonged spell on the sidelines through injury.
Earlier in the week, Blackburn had tried to reward Sutton by giving him the No 9 shirt previously owned by Alan Shearer. The 23-year-old will have to be content with a No 16 on his back for the remainder of the season after the switch was vetoed by the FA.
Sutton had earlier shown his all-round ability as a provider before turning goalscorer 11 minutes from the break. Kevin Gallacher and Jason Wilcox were both recipients of Sutton's near-perfect passes, but Gallacher's 20-yarder was superbly stopped by Kasey Keller in the Leicester goal, while Simon Grayson cleared off the toes of Wilcox. Sutton broke the deadlock with a poacher's header after Tim Sherwood had cracked a rasping volley against the underside of the bar.
During the break O'Neill, whose side had lacked the cutting edge up front during the first half, switched Ian Marshall from defence to attack and the move eventually paid off 13 minutes from time.
Colin Hendry, celebrating his 30th birthday, brought down Neil Lennon on the edge of the area. Mustafa Izzet whipped in a dangerous far-post cross which the static Rovers defence seemed content to let drift out of play until Marshall stole in to fire past the helpless Tim Flowers for his first goal since 22 September.Reuse content